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[517] struggle was before him. His sensitive, sympathetic temperament was doubtless a part of his case, making recovery less steady and more difficult.

After his arrival in Boston he remained four months at home, with many visits to Longfellow at Cambridge, taking systematic exercise and avoiding excitement.1 He was able to ride on horseback, but otherwise passed most of his time on his bed. He slept better, though still wakeful, and gained flesh,—the result of his inactive life; but there was still the pressure on the head after fatigue or unusual effort of mind. He was treated by Dr. Perry in consultation with Dr. James Jackson, both of whom insisted on his continued abstinence from public effort and the excitement of Washington.2 They advised a journey to Europe, hoping that change of scene and distance from the contests in which he was longing to participate would have a salutary effect. Late in the year he formed the purpose to pass the vacation of Congress in Europe. Finding himself unable to go to Washington at the beginning of December, he postponed taking his seat till January 1, and was at the later date still unable to go on.

Whittier wrote, Nov. 12, 1856:—

I would say a word to thee as an old friend. Do not leave home for Washington until thy health is more fully established. Massachusetts, God bless her! loves her son too well to require him to hazard his health by a premature resumption of his duties.

Fessenden wrote from the Senate, December 18:—

I miss you very much, my dear Sumner, and so do we all, looking forward impatiently to the time when we can again have the aid of your great powers. But let not your own impatient ardor disappoint us. Be sure that your physical vigor is well restored before plunging again into this whirlpool of abominations.

Governor Chase wrote from Columbus, December 13:—

I see it stated that you purpose going to Washington about the first of January. Let me beg you to risk nothing, but to lay aside every care except

1 Longfellow wrote in his diary, November 2: ‘Sumner arrived just as we were sitting down to breakfast; he looks well in the face, but is feeble, and walks with an uncertain step.’ November 14: ‘Sumner is getting on very well; he takes a pretty long trot on horseback every forenoon, and a walk in the afternoon, and sleeps well. Still, I fear he has a long and weary road before him.’ John Brown's call on the senator in February, 1857, is described by an eye-witness, James Freeman Clarke, in his ‘Memorial and Biographical Sketches,’ pp. 101, 102. Sumner's call on Lydia Maria Child at this time is noted in her ‘Letters,’ p. 88.

2 Works, vol. IV. pp. 329, 342.

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